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Three NYPD Detectives Face Charges for Stealing $1,300 Worth of Pricey Jay-Z Ace of Spades Champagne at a Concert

Three New York City Police narcotics detectives face charges relating to the theft of two bottles of rapper Jay-Z’s pricey Ace of Spades champagne during a music festival in 2022. Each bottle costs approximately $1,500. The officers formally were charged on May 15.

Glendale, Arizona – Feb. 12: Jay-Z attends Super Bowl LVII between the Philadelphia Eagles and the Kansas City Chiefs at State Farm Stadium on February 12, 2023, in Glendale, Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

Accused of Stealing Hov’s Champagne

The three were providing narcotics enforcement at the Electric Zoo music festival on Randall’s Island. Authorities say the three “were in the VIP area,” around 7 p.m., according to a press release from the Manhattan district attorney’s office, when concertgoers at a table close by had ordered the premium champagne.

When those guests stepped away, detective Jonathan Gonzalez reportedly took two of the unopened bottles, sitting them on a table near where his colleagues, detectives Wojciech Czech and Warren Golden, were standing. The DA’s office says Czech handed the bottles to Gonzalez, who placed them in a backpack. Authorities say Golden took no action “to intervene to prevent the theft or restore the stolen property to its owners,” and that one guest witnessed the theft, the press release states.

The detectives reportedly tried to enter a restricted, staff-only area when two guests from the VIP area who had ordered the champagne confronted them in front of a security officer.

The security officer reportedly removed the bottles from the backpack and handed them back to their owners. He then contacted his employer, who, in turn, contacted the police, court documents say.

Both Gonzalez and Czech each face charges of one count of grand larceny in the fourth degree and criminal possession of stolen property in the fourth degree — both felonies. Golden and Gonzalez each face charges of one count of official misconduct. Czech and Golden reportedly were suspended without pay, and Gonzalez is expected to be suspended without pay.

The announcement of the charges against the officers was officially made by Manhattan district attorney Alvin Bragg on May 15.

“As a result of the continuing joint investigation with the Internal Affairs Bureau and the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office, two NYPD officers were arrested and subsequently suspended from duty today. The NYPD will continue to pursue the facts in this investigation and initiate further discipline where appropriate,” a statement from NYPD read.

The detectives reportedly all were part of the Manhattan North Narcotics Unit.

“In addition to the alleged theft that occurred, none of these officers stepped up and stopped this activity. Public confidence in the criminal justice system depends on members of law enforcement acting with the utmost integrity while on duty and following the same rules that apply to everyone else,” Bragg said in a statement.

Although Gonzalez is expected to resign from the force and will arraigned later in the week, Czech and Golden appeared ready to defend their positions. Czech entered a plea of not guilty to felony charges of grand larceny and criminal possession of stolen property. Meanwhile, Golden pleaded not guilty to official misconduct, a misdemeanor. Both were released without bail.

Golden is also being charged for witnessing a crime and not taking “any action to intervene to prevent the theft or restore the stolen property to its owners,” prosecutors said.

However, Golden’s lawyer, Jacob Weinstein, said that his client, “will be totally vindicated in this matter…The charge is simply not supported by the facts and the DA’s office should never have brought this allegation,” The Daily News reported.

Czech’s lawyer, Oliver Storch, said the following: “(My client) is shocked and saddened by these allegations. He has pleaded not guilty and asks the public to withhold judgement until the charges can be fully addressed in the appropriate forum. Det. Czech loves being in the business of protecting and saving lives.”

Ace of Spades

Ace of Spades champagne is a luxury brand that has been praised by critics and consumers alike. The champagne is made by the Cattier family, which has been producing champagne since 1763. Ace of Spades is known for its bold flavor and its distinctive gold bottle. The champagne is available in a variety of sizes, including a 30-liter “Midas” bottle.

Jay-Z, whose reported net worth is worth an estimated $2.5 billion, became involved with Ace of Spades in 2006, when he began to feature the champagne in his music videos and interviews. 

In 2014, he purchased a controlling stake in the company. Under Jay-Z’s leadership, Ace of Spades has become one of the most popular champagne brands in the world.

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